There was lots of corn in the country that fall. Perhaps a corn sheller would bring in a little extra money, our older brother thought, so he bought a horse-power sheller and started shelling corn for the neighbors. If I remember correctly, he got half cent per bushel.
One day, as he came over the hill with the sheller and the four horses that powered it, we observed that he was also towing a monstrosity. It had two great big fly wheels mounted on a running gear with a tin smokestack in front. It was a Stickney gas engine for pulling the sheller. After he got the Stickney he still continued to drag along the horses for power in an emergency. One cold day while they were shelling corn, the Stickney gas engine missed an explosion and the next second parts were flying in all directions. The horses started running away, and so did the men. When the excitement subsided, there was no Stickney gas engine. Only the running gear on which it had been mounted was left lying on its side in the yard. Pieces of broken metal were found all over the lace, but none of them resembled the gasoline engine that had been firing so loudly at irregular intervals just a few minutes before. Some of the pieces had lodged in the corn sheller, ruining that also. That ended the corn-shelling venture.